Uncovering Portugal

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Amber Christian
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Resuming international travel. Exploring new places. We have been blessed enough to be able to travel internationally for years. I think we might have even taken it for a granted a little in the end. And then Covid struck and turned our world and everyone else's upside down. As the pandemic dragged on and we rode the rollercoaster, my heart started yearning to get on an airplane. Put me on that tin can in the sky and send me exotic places! Last spring when we were fully vaccinated, I started to let my heart dream a little. And then a friend told us he had booked a trip to Europe. My ears perked up. No one in our friend circle was willing to travel internationally yet. I listened carefully as he described all the places they were planning to go in Portugal and Spain. I had been to Barcelona, but had never been to Portugal.

We decided to go for it. Once Portugal opened the doors to Americans, we planned and booked our trip. And what a trip it was! On so many fronts, we were a little rusty. Packing took me far longer than my normal 20-30 minutes. Sleeping on airplanes overnight was a struggle, since our bodies haven't done it in so long. And our feet felt like they might simply fall off from all the walking and cobblestones. But it was tough to wipe the grins off our faces. Mask or no mask, I was grinning from ear to ear for most of this trip. Europe- I have missed you so much! The warmth, hospitality, and precautions being taken by the tourism industry in Portugal made this an incredibly memorable trip.

Our accommodations in Lisbon were very close to the tram. I got used to peek around the corner to make sure a tram wasn't upon us before stepping too far out on to the road. I was captivated by the winding, hilly, cobblestone streets. My back and feet? Not so captivated.

With so much of Lisbon built on hills, we got used to periodically coming across sidewalks and steps that doubled as restaurant patios. Arrive early for your reservation? No problem, grab a drink and grab a step.

There is no way I could fully describe all that we did on this trip. So I focused on the highlights. If you would like to read more about our trip, here are links to the stories roughly in order of our itinerary.

A Taste of Lisbon

Sailing the Tagus in Lisbon

Oh my Cod- Lisbon food tour

Those Lovely blue tiles

When you need to take a time out

Wandering through Belem

Who's up for some tinned fish?

Sunset sail with a chef

Cascais and a little more Jose

Beautiful Sintra

Portuguese High Speed Trains

Oh Porto, My Porto

Winding through the Douro Valley

The fabulous foods of Porto

Pottering around in Porto

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